Why Do I Need to Change My Furnace Filter?

Changing Your Furnace Filter Improves Air Quality

So, what's the purpose of a furnace filter? It maintains your homes air quality by removing allergens and air pollutants. These small bits of dirt and particles can affect and worsen your allergies, congestion, and even intensify other health problems such as asthma. Changing your filter can help reduce these issues.

Changing Your Furnace Filter Reduces Repairs

Not changing or going too long in-between replacing your filter can cause harm to your furnace. A clogged filter will make your furnace work harder to push air throughout your home and can increase the possibility of an expensive furnace repair.

What About the Furnace Filter Recommendations?

Typically furnace filters have a recommendation as to when to replace it. This will depend on the quality and size of the filter. Usually “30 days” is on the low end, and up to “12 months” on the higher end. Now, keep in mind, these are averages, and there are several factors that will determine how often you should change them. Below is a list of what will determine the time frame in which your furnace filter should be replaced.

1) Pets & Their Impact on Your Furnace Filter

We all love our pets, but they do shed. This dandruff and hair circulates through your home and will eventually cycle back through your furnace filter. If you have large dogs or lots of cats you may notice your furnace filter gets dirtier quicker. If you let it go too long you may actually notice some of the hair built up around the opening where your filter sits. A good idea would be to give this a vacuum before pulling your filter out, and be sure to have the rest of the area hair-free before your next filter.

2) Construction or Renovations

If you are doing any renovations in the near future or have recently completed some; now is a good time to check your filter. Renovations such as drywalling, painting, flooring, or anything that involves cutting wood or increased traffic in and out of your home will contribute to an excess amount of sawdust and particles floating around.

3) Do You Keep Your Windows Open in The Summer or At Night?

Those hot summer months are a perfect opportunity for some open windows and just the right cross breeze. Am I right? However, this does cause outdoor air pollutants to make their way into your home. Unfortunately, those screens don’t work the same way a furnace filter does. The best option to avoid these circumstances is to invest in an air conditioner for your home. An AC Unit can lessen the need to open windows, and keep your home air quality clean, and most importantly; keep you cool all summer long.

4) Location, Location, Location.

If you have a newly built home in a new community you may notice your filter gets dirtier, quicker. All of the outside construction and digging can cause your filters to collect dust. Now keep in mind here. If your furnace filter is dirty this is actually a very GOOD thing. It means you are not breathing in these allergens and that your filter is doing its job.

5) Do You Keep Your Heat or A/C Fan On?

Keeping your fan running all the time means your furnace will be circulating air throughout your home 24/7. This means running air through the filter more and of course causing it to collect more particles faster. Leaving your fans run constant can cause your motor to burn out faster and increase the occurrence of maintenance repairs. As the filter becomes filled with dust and dirt particles; air will be restricted from flowing freely which causes excess pressure on the motor.

6) Do You Smoke in Your Home?

Smoking inside your home can cause a build-up of particles in your filters as well as your ducts. This will dramatically increase the regularity of changing your filter. If you want to help reduce the cost of frequent filter replacement; smoking outside may be a better option.

7) Your Day-To-Day Lifestyle

If you have a busy home with lots of kids and family in and out then you are more likely to replace your filter sooner than the recommendation.